Gorumara National Park
It was declared a wildlife sanctuary in 1949 and a National Park in 1992.
The area where Gorumara National Park is located in is known as the Dooars. It lies in the Himalayan foothills and has great natural beauty. The park is located on the bank of rivers Murti and Raidak and has vegetation of riverine grasslands interspersed with savannah woodlands. Much of the forest is moist deciduous and sal (shorea robusta) is the most common and valuable tree. Teak, simul, siris, khair are also found here.
The park has recorded fifty species of mammals, three hundred species of birds, twenty species of reptiles, and thirty species of amphibians.
Mammals: The park is rich in large herbivores including Indian rhinoceros, gaur, Asian elephant, sloth bear, chital, and sambar deer. Small herbivores include barking deer, hog deer and wild boar. There is a comparative lack of large carnivores, with the only big cat being the Leopard. The park is not home to any resident population of Bengal tigers, Indian wild dogs or Indian wolf. tigers are, however, occasionally spotted here. It does have numerous small carnivores including various civets, mongooses and small cats. The park has a large resident population of wild boar, but the critically endangered pygmy hog has been reported from the park. It also has numerous rodents, including giant squirrels. The rare Hispid hare has also been reported from the park.
Birds: Gorumara National Park is famous for its bird population - which includes brilliant submontane forest birds like the scarlet minivet, sunbird, Asian paradise flycatcher, spangled drongo and great Indian hornbill. Numerous woodpeckers and pheasants inhabit the park. Peafowls are very common. The park is on the flyway of numerous migratory birds, including the rare Brahminy Duck.
Reptiles and amphibians: The park is home to a large number of snakes, venomous and non-venomous, including the Indian python, one of the largest snakes in the world, and the king cobra - the world's largest venomous snake.
- By air - Bagdogra (13 km from Siliguri) is the nearest airport.
- By rail - Nearest railway station is New Maynaguri, 20 km and New Mal 30 km from Lataguri Gorumara National Park. The park is accessible from the rail stations at Siliguri, Jalpaiguri, Alipurduar, Cooch Behar from where one can hire a jeep/ car through National Highway 31 to Lataguri, the gateway to the park.
- By road : National Highway 31 which connects Siliguri and Guwahati passes through
Lataguri (about 75 km from Siliguri), Chalsa and Nagrakata near the park. Gorumara National Park is 1 km from Lataguri, 10 km from Chalsa. It is recommended to hire vehicles from Chalsa or Lataguri to enter the National Park. Most hotels will arrange for the visit.
Chalsa on north and Mainaguri on south are the nearest rail stations. Madarihat is the nearest rail station from Jaldapara Wildlife sanctuary. However, Mal Jn. is the nearest rail station where long distance mail/express trains stop, on north of Gorumara N.P.
Gorumara Park fees around Rs.40/- per person. Other fees to be paid are the guide and parking fees. The park is closed on Thursdays (May 2008)
Gorumara National Park.
The best way to watch wildlife at the park is to use powerful binoculars, with night vision facilities at night, from the numerous well-located watchtowers at the park. The watchtowers are:
- Jatraprasad Watch Tower: Named after a legendary elephant
- Rhino Observation Point: Watch tower in front of the Gorumara forest bungalow
- Chandrachur Watch Tower: Near the Murti forest bungalow
- Chukchuki Bird-watching Point: Good for birding
- Medla Watch Tower
There are no ranger-led or otherwise all-terrain vehicle or elephantback forays into the jungle. Hiking is permitted on metalled roads, but is slightly unsafe considering the population of elephants, gaur and rhinoceros present in the park. The park is closed in the monsoon season (normally June–September).
Aranya Jungle Resort (Aranya Garumara Jungle Resort,Lataguri), Gorumara National Park, Lataguri, District - Jalpaiguri, State - West Bengal, PIN Code - 734001, India, ☎ .
- Panchavati Forest Resort, Lataguri Ph:9832205538, 9832068303.
Jungle Heritage,, ☎ . Lataguri, originally a gift shop closed for long time
Green View, Lataguri,, ☎ . No lodging only food
Kanchanjungha Tiger Hill (Just opposite the Gorumara Forest Gate), ☎ . Check-in: 12 noon, check-out: 11.30 AM. Rs 800/1200/1500.
Garumara Jungle Camp,. Chalsa
- Meghamallar Tourist Lodge, Malbazar (18 km from Lataguri), Contact for reservation - West Bengal Tourism Development Corporation, Telephone +91 33 2248 5917/ 2248 8271
Gorumara Forest Rest House,, ☎ . For details contact - DFO, Wildlife Divn.-II, Aranyabhavan, Jalpaiguri.
Tiyabon Resorts (Gorumara Nation Park, West Bengal, India), Village Mangalbari...Kharar Bander Forest (3 Kms From Chalsa and 8 Km From Gorumara National Park), ☎ . , 9830423246Check-in: 11:30AM, check-out: 11AM. In Tiyabon 15 cottages are spread over 2.33 acres of land adjasent to forest. 800-1600.
- Resort Sonar Bangla, Near Gorumara National Park,Lataguri,jalpaiguri,(75 km from N.J.P.Station), Telephone +91 3561 266 558//09932483338
Rose Valley Lataguri, Gorumara National Park (Lataguri), ☎ . Resort Rose Valley (Nakshatra) is in the heart of Garumara National Forest. The resort provides you with a natural healing effect cocooned in the heart of sprawling mountains in the backdrop, the silvery lake cutting through the ground, alluring tea gardens, mushy wilderness and lush greenery. It has 6 for beded and 14 double beded AC rooms, Conference Hall, Restaurant, satellite TV, Also arranges safari to parks. Rs.3000-3500.
- Keep fire away. This is the most destructive of all forces. Please do not kindle fires, throw lighted matches, cigarettes, bidis etc.
- Keep the forest clean. Do not litter with plastic, paper, cellophane etc.
- Keep pets at home.
- Do not carry firearms, explosives, etc. These are prohibited.
- Keep sober. Do not consume alcoholic drinks within the sanctuary.
- Entering inside the forest is prohibited. Follow the specific road/ path only.
- Picnics are not permitted inside the sanctuary.
- Do not tease the wild animals. Watch and observe nature silently.
- Drive slowly. Permissible speed is 20 km/hr.
- Disorderly conduct is not permitted.
- No person shall hunt, destroy or remove or collect any forest produce or wildlife. Fishing prohibited.
Violations of any provisions as mentioned above or any rules shall be punishable under Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and rules made thereunder and Indian Forest Act,1927.